5G Global Mobile Network Experience award 2023 (Techatty.com)

Opensignal - While 5G adoption and deployments have been rising quickly, the maturity of 5G networks varies widely between markets. Some have completed foundational deployments, and are driving into the next phase of 5G by deploying standalone access technology which enables advanced use cases like network slicing or leveraging mmWave to drive more differentiated experiences.

Jan 9, 2024 - 09:03
Jan 8, 2024 - 16:07
5G Global Mobile Network Experience award 2023  (Techatty.com)
Techatty All-in-1 Publishing
Techatty All-in-1 Publishing

Once again, Opensignal sheds light on the difference in the 5G Mobile Network Eexperience seen by our users on different
operators across the globe — to better inform users, operators and regulators — and to celebrate the mobile
industry’s collective efforts.

While 5G adoption and deployments have been rising quickly, the maturity of 5G networks varies widely
between markets. Some have completed foundational deployments, and are driving into the next phase of
5G by deploying standalone access technology which enables advanced use cases like network slicing or
leveraging mmWave to drive more differentiated experiences. Other markets are at an earlier stage in their
5G journey due to a combination of spectrum policy and availability, together with the amount of capital
that their operators can invest. This complexity means that it remains as important as ever to understand
the real-world 5G experience. Everyone wishes to quantify what 5G really means for mobile users.

5G is making a massive difference in many markets — dramatically increasing users’ download speeds and
improving their experience when streaming video and playing multiplayer mobile games. In our recent 5G
global benchmark insight, we found that typically, in markets where 5G is well established with sizable
adoption, the improvement in average download speeds with 5G is 3-6 times faster than 4G. Similarly, users
see significant — but smaller — boosts in their video streaming and multiplayer gaming experience with 5G.

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Whether they are later or earlier in their 5G evolution, the challenge facing operators today — particularly
in the current macroeconomic environment — is how to take advantage of the uplift in user experience that
5G provides to maximize their return on investment. This is best achieved by chief network officers targeting
their next round of investment in the areas that create the most customer opportunity while chief marketing
and revenue officers focus their offensive tactics in the areas where their mobile experience is superior
to their competitors. While this report compares operators across markets — and in doing so highlights
those that the mobile industry can learn the most from — Opensignal can go into far more granular detail if
required, making it the perfect partner for those seeking to make the most from their investments in 5G.

This year we have decided to take a slightly different approach from previous 5G Global Awards. As it is a
hugely different — and more difficult — undertaking to roll out 5G across a vast territory than across a small
nation or city-state, we have split operators into two groups. Group I contains operators from markets with
a land area of more than 200,000km2 while Group II consists of operators whose home market is below this
threshold. This allows for more meaningful comparisons and better reflects the difficulties associated with
deploying 5G across large swathes of lightly populated terrain.

We have examined four key measures of the 5G experience and determined the 5G Global Winners for each
group using confidence intervals as we do with all of our reports. If the confidence intervals overlap then
the result is a statistical tie and we declare two or more operators to be joint winners. For each measure we
have created a group of 5G Global Leaders — the operators that are in second through to fifth place, taking
confidence intervals into account. The number of Global Leaders in each category varies due to statistical
ties between operators’ scores. Given the rapid pace of change in 5G experience we have also compared
how it has changed year-on-year. We’ve analyzed the difference between the first half of 2022 and the first
half of 2023 and recognized the 15 operators in each group with the highest percentage improvements in
our users’ experience in three categories – 5G Availability, 5G Download Speed, and 5G Games Experience.


T-Mobile USA and Puerto Rico triumph on 5G Availability
Our T-Mobile USA and Puerto Rico 5G users spend the greatest proportion of time with an active 5G connection in their respective groups (I and II), with scores of 56.1% and 65.3%. 5G Availability is an important measure of the mobile experience as users can only benefit from the superior experience that 5G provides when they have a 5G connection. Both operators beat the competition by impressive margins as the runners-up in Group I and II — India’s Jio and South Korean KT score 41.6% and 49%, respectively.

Sweden’s Telenor, Malaysia’s Unifi and South Korea’s SK telecom are this year’s kings of speed
Our Telenor and Unifi users observe the fastest average 5G Download Speeds in Group I, making the two operators 5G Global Winners with statistically tied scores of 407.4-421.7Mbps. They are followed by three 5G Global Leaders: Brazil’s Vivo, Malaysia’s Digi and TIM Brazil. In Group II, SK telecom is the sole 5G Global Winner with a score of 458.5Mbps — the other two South Korean operators — KT and LG U+ are 5G Global Leaders, along with Singapore’s M1 and A1 Bulgaria.

Across Group I markets, our users with Japan’s SoftBank and Malaysia’s Digi have the best experience when playing multiplayer mobile games on 5G
SoftBank and Digi share the top spot in Group I for 5G Games Experience with statistically tied scores of 89.7-90.2 points on a 100-point scale. Two other Malaysian operators are Global Leaders in Group I — Celcom and U Mobile, alongside Indonesia’s Telkomsel. Singapore’s Singtel reigns supreme in Group II with a score of 93.7 points while its local rivals, StarHub and M1 are 5G Global Leaders as are csl, 3, and CMHK in Hong Kong.

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In Group I, Sweden’s Telenor and Tele2 come top for 5G Video Experience
Swedish Telenor and Tele2 are Group I’s 5G Global Winners with statistically tied scores of 78-78.6 points on a 100-point scale. The only 5G Global Leader in Group I which is not European, is Japan’s SoftBank with a score of 77.8 points. A much tighter race in Group II has resulted in a remarkable nine-way tie for the top spot consisting of Slovenia’s Telemach, Telekom Slovenije and A1, Singapore’s StarHub and Singtel, Magenta and A1 in Austria, Swisscom in Switzerland along with O2 in Slovakia.

The Philippines’ Globe and Denmark’s Telia have made the most improvement in 5G Games Experience
In Group I, our Globe users observed the largest year-on-year (YoY) percentage increase in 5G Games Experience — a rise of 30.3%, followed by fellow 5G Global Rising Stars Movistar Chile with 26.7% and French Free Mobile with 26.1%. Turning to Group II, the greatest improvement was seen by our Telia users in Denmark — a rise of 23.1%, ahead of A1 Bulgaria’s and Danish Telenor’s increases of 19.8% and 19.2%.

Brazilian 5G download speeds rocket upwards, while M1 and StarHub users see the largest boost in Group II
Brazilian operators take the first three places for the YoY percentage improvement in 5G Download Speed in Group I. Vivo tops the list of 5G Global Rising Stars, with an incredible increase of 829%, followed by TIM with 546.7% and Claro with 469.7%. These improvements were mainly driven by the ongoing rollout of 5G in the 3.5GHz band, which began in Brasilia in mid-2022. In Group II, the gains were more modest, with Singapore’s StarHub topping the table with a rise of 114%, followed by its 5G consortium partner, M1, with 103.8%. 

TIM Brazil and 3 Denmark top the charts for rises in 5G Availability
Our TIM users in Brazil observed the largest percentage improvement in 5G Availability across Group I — a rise of 559.8%, followed by Italy’s Iliad with 461.4% and fellow Brazilian operator Vivo with an increase of 222.7%. In Group II, the operator with the largest YoY improvement in 5G Availability is Denmark’s 3 with a rise of 175.1%, followed by M1 and StarHub with rises of 161.1% and 112.7%, respectively.

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